Three summers ago, Sam Neely and Eugene Cleghorn brought a taste of the west coast to Rockaway and locals got a taste of what they didn’t know they were missing—San Francisco-style burritos. Super Burrito became an instant hit at the Beach 97th boardwalk concession, so much so, that now they’re bringing their forearm-sized burritos to locals year-round. This spring, Super Burrito will open a brick-and-mortar location in Arverne By The Sea.
Originally from the Bay Area of California and best friends since high school, Neely and Cleghorn moved to Rockaway six years ago. Missing the food of their hometown, and wanting to start a business since they were 20, the buddies got a taste of it when they opened their boardwalk concession in the summer of 2017. Their massive burritos and charm soon had people coming back for more. “Their burritos are on point. A great example of Mission-style. Beyond that, Eugene and Sam are absolute sweethearts who have shown me nothing but respect,” Rockaway Park resident, Nick Rowe, said.
The only bad thing was that Rockaway winters were a little less super when the concessions closed for the season. But good news for all the Super Burrito lovers out there! The owners are now going to be able to fulfill burrito cravings year-round, as they're bringing a new wave to The Tides. Right next to Locals Collective and Cuisine by Claudette on Beach 69th Street, Super Burrito will be the newest neighbor of Arverne by the Sea.
“The desire for this type of food has grown out here,” Neely said. “We wanted to build that for everyone and ourselves.” According to the duo, taquerias in California are like the pizzerias here in NY. Just like you grab a slice on your lunch break or on your way home, people out in Cali grab a burrito. “It’s my favorite food and it would be my choice for last meal,” Cleghorn said with laugh.
Super Burrito’s food has already captured the hearts and appetites of locals. The massive burritos are stuffed with a choice of meat or veggies, rice, beans, jack cheese, avocado, pico de gallo, salsa verde, salsa roja and sour cream, all wrapped into a tortilla. They also offer bowls and quesadillas. However, with a new location and a bigger kitchen, the owners will be able to slightly expand the menu and offer more specials. But the originals aren’t going anywhere, much to the joy of those who’ve tried them.
“The al pastor is always fresh and delicious and there is just something magical about the way they steam their tortillas with the cheese in them,” says local surfer, Terence McNicholas, who likes to catch a bite during surf breaks. The owners don’t want to disclose any of the new items yet, so you will have to check them out when Super Burrito opens. The owners expect to open sometime in April. Along with an expanded menu, Super Burrito will also be able to offer delivery, and the owners say they hope to eventually deliver as far as Breezy Point and Broad Channel.
When originally looking to expand, Manhattan and Brooklyn did come to mind, but ultimately the guys decided to pay it back to the place that helped them get their start. “We wanted to reward the place that propped us up,” said Neely. “We also want to show respect to the locals here and the generation of families living here,” Cleghorn said. In addition to their customers, the friends say they also received a lot of support from Whitney Aycock, Graham Hill, Sean Flaherty, and Dominic Boero, so they knew they’d be in good company by opening a place locally.
When looking for spaces, the up-and-coming surfing area of Arverne felt the most right and they were able to acquire the last spot under The Tides.
For the friends, Rockaway brought them a sense of home. While living in Brooklyn, they discovered Rockaway and realized it had a familiar feel. “It reminded me of San Fran, the ocean, the bay, the fog, the microclimate, I haven’t felt more at home,” Cleghorn said. Bringing a taste of home to their new home felt right. “We wanted to taste the food of our home and share it with Rockaway,” Neely said.
Expanding has been a dream for Cleghorn and Neely and now that it’s becoming a reality, they’re hoping it’s the start of something big.
To give back to all of those who helped them get this far, Cleghorn and Neely will be holding a special grand opening celebration. Stay tuned for details!
By Nicole Taylor-LangBLOG COMMENTS POWERED BY DISQUS